Published: Tue, May 15, 2018

Oil Price Hike After Pre-Poll Freeze Fuels Allegations of Government Intervention

Oil Price Hike After Pre-Poll Freeze Fuels Allegations of Government Intervention

Similarly, the price of diesel in Delhi is Rs 66.14 per litre, Rs 68.68 in Kolkata, Rs 70.43 in Mumbai and Rs 69.79 in Chennai.

Last June, Indian oil companies had moved from a "once-in-a-fortnight" revision of petrol and diesel to daily revisions. Prices have more or less mirrored worldwide rates since then. We can expect further price hikes in the coming days. It has already depreciated 5 per cent this year, and if it continues to slip, sharper fuel price hikes in the near future will no longer remain mere speculation. Oil companies in India have the mandate to carry out daily revisions in the prices of petrol and diesel. For almost three weeks Oil companies had kept rates unchanged despite an increase in the input cost.

Fuel prices have soared quite a bit in 2018 - petrol has risen by up to ₹5.24 across major metro cities, while diesel by up to ₹7.39. The prices will slightly vary in bunks operated by different oil marketing firms.


Last time, petrol and diesel prices were revised on April 24. Petrol would cost ₹77.81 a litre and power petrol ₹80.77 a litre, said dealers. Chairman Sanjiv Singh had earlier said that his firm had made a decision to "temporarily moderate" prices.

According to estimates, since the start of April Indian Oil Corp, Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd, and Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd have suffered a combined total loss of around Rs 1,500 - 1,700 crore in the wake of hiked crude oil prices. Oil PSUs have refused to acknowledge that the price freeze, possibly, followed a government diktat so as to help the ruling BJP in Karnataka.

The dividend of oil companies- refineries as well as OMCs- to the central government came down 16 per cent in 2017-18, to Rs 146 billion from Rs 175 billion in 2016-17, the highest ever achieved.

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